Woodland Park Zoo to Close Night Exhibit

January 13th, 2010 by Amy Alphin Leave a reply »


So I found out today that Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo is closing the Night Exhibit, which showcases nocturnal animals in a very dark setting so that they are active for visitors to see. I have been to many zoos and have never seen an exhibit quite like this one. It is always the highlight of any trip I take to the zoo and one I have always found intensely interesting. And soon it will be gone.

According to their website, the WPZ needs to, “reduce annual expenses between $800,000 and $1 million”, and the Night Exhibit, “is an older building with very high operating costs and its energy use is one of the highest in the zoo”, therefore making it the one to go. Now, I understand the economy is hard, and cut have to be made somewhere, I just wish it wasn’t my FAVORITE exhibit that was cut.

Here is the letter I wrote to the zoo:

Dear Woodland Park Zoo, I have visited the zoo many times, and think it is a very important part of Seattle. When I first visited the zoo, it was with a group of preschoolers, and I have since visited with other classes I have taught, as well as independently and with friends. It is a place I always take friends and family who visit the Seattle area. The exhibit I am always the most excited to visit and share with others is the Night Exhibit. It showcases animals we would otherwise almost never interact with. The students are fascinated with the scurrying armadillo, the spookily hanging bats and the cute, large eyed bush baby. I understand that these are hard economic times, and some cuts need to be made, it just seems a shame that such a popular and unique exhibit would be the one to make the cut. Do you have a final date for closure set? I would like to visit the zoo before the exhibit closes. I will miss the exhibit, and feel the zoo experience will be “missing something” after it’s gone. Sincerely, Amy A

If you live in the Seattle area, and are upset about the closure of the Night Exhibit, I encourage you to email or call the zoo and let your opinion be heard. I don’t know if it will do any good, as it sounds like the decision has already been made, but at least they will know that people were not happy about it.

Press release: http://www.zoo.org/nightexhibit/statement

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